Gallup: Dems Have 30 States & Republicans Have Only 4?

A Gallup poll that came out yesterday drew quite a bit of attention because it basically seemed to indicate that the Republican Party was as good as dead,

Political Party Affiliation: 30 States Blue, 4 Red in ’09 So Far

…These results are based on interviews with over 160,000 U.S. adults conducted between January and June 2009, including a minimum of 400 interviews for each state (305 in the District of Columbia). Each state’s data is weighted to demographic characteristics for that state to ensure it is representative of the state’s adult population.

…As was the case in Gallup’s analysis of 2008 yearly data, most states are currently Democratic in their party orientation, with the greatest number (30, including the District of Columbia) classified as solidly Democratic, with an additional 8 states leaning Democratic.

Meanwhile, only four states can be considered solidly Republican — Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, and Alaska, with Alabama falling into the leaning Republican category.

That leaves a total of eight states that are competitive in terms of party identification, with none showing a party advantage of greater than two points. These include Mississippi (+1 Republican), North Dakota and Nebraska (even), and Kansas, Arizona, Texas, South Carolina, and Montana (all +2 Democratic).

So, 30 states are Democratic, 4 are Republican, and the rest are toss ups, huh? There are a lot of different ways that I could slice this poll up, but I’m just going to use the two simplest ones.

You probably have to go all the way back to Gerald Ford’s run for the White House, in 1976, to find a worse environment for a Republican presidential contender to run in than the one we had in 2008. We had a bad candidate, a terrible political environment, a huge money deficit, an unhappy base — you name the problem, we had it. It other words, we were scraping the bottom of the barrel as a political party last year. Yet and still, John McCain won 46% of the popular vote and carried 22 states. In other words, by Gallup’s calculations, in the worst year imaginable, McCain won all the Republican states, all the toss-ups, and 2 “blue states.”

Additionally, Rasmussen, which is a better pollster than Gallup and uses likely voters as opposed to adults, currently finds that the American people prefer the GOP to the Dems on 8-of-10 key issues.

Voters now trust Republicans more than Democrats on eight out of 10 key electoral issues, including, for the second straight month, the top issue of the economy. They’ve also narrowed the gap on the remaining two issues, the traditionally Democratic strong suits of health care and education.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that voters trust the GOP more on economic issues 46% to 41%, showing little change from the six-point lead the party held last month. This is just the second time in over two years of polling the GOP has held the advantage on economic issues. The parties were close on the issue in May, with the Democrats holding a one-point lead.

Voters not affiliated with either party trust Republicans more to handle the economy by a 46% to 32% margin.

It’s always foolish to underestimate the GOP’s propensity to screw-up a good thing, but at the moment, Gallup poll or no Gallup poll, it’s the Democrats, not the Republicans who are in trouble.

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